Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedinShare via Email Share via Shortlink FHFA director Mark Calabria and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (Getty)It’s unclear if the Trump administration will achieve its goal of ending the government’s involvement in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac before President-elect Joe Biden takes office.Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in an interview with the Wall Street Journal that he’s unlikely to support a consent order that would end the government’s conservatorship of the mortgage-finance giants before President Donald Trump leaves office.Instead, Mnuchin said he is focused on ways for Fannie and Freddie to build capital to absorb future losses and eventually raise money from new investors. He said he did not want to do anything that puts taxpayers at “additional risk.”“We also want to be careful that we don’t do anything that overnight would limit access to mortgage finance,” Mnuchin said in the interview.ADVERTISEMENTBut the treasury secretary’s comments conflict with a new report from Business Insider, alleging that Fannie Mae executives have told top employees to be prepared to work over the holidays, as an “11th-hour release” from the conservatorship agreement may be coming. Business Insider cited sources familiar with the matter and internal communications.The continued government involvement with Fannie and Freddie has become a hot-button issue for free-market conservatives, who believe the mortgage companies should return to privatization since going under government control after the financial crisis.Mark Calabria, the director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Fannie and Freddie, wanted to expedite this process before Biden took office. He wanted the government to take legal steps that the next administration would be hard to reverse, but needed Mnuchin’s approval in order to do so.Previously, Calabria was attempting to put together $240 billion in capital that Fannie and Freddie would need to hold to go private.Fannie and Freddie do not originate home loans, but rather guarantee the mortgages by purchasing and securitizing loans which they then sell to investors. The agencies play a crucial role in the pricing of home loans and the 30-year fixed rate mortgage.The government took over the entities after the 2008 financial crisis to stave off insolvency because of their exposure to subprime loans.[WSJ, BI] — Keith Larsen Tagsfannie maefreddie macMortgagesResidential Real Estate Share via Shortlink
This study examined high temperature survival and heat shock protein 70 (Hsp70) responses to temperature variation for two marine invertebrate species on sub-Antarctic Marion Island. The isopod Exosphaeroma gigas Leach and the amphipod Hyale hirtipalma Dana had the same tolerance to high temperature. The mean upper temperature which was lethal for 50% of the population (upper lethal temperature, ULT50) was 26.4°C for both species. However, the isopod E. gigas showed significant plasticity of ULT50, with a positive response to acclimation. In addition, the isopod had a heat shock response of Hsp70 at all acclimations, and the amount of Hsp70 protein increased significantly from basal levels upon an acute warm exposure after a cold acclimation. By contrast, the amphipod H. hirtipalma showed limited plasticity of ULT50 and no evidence for a heat shock response (failure of three different Hsp70 antibodies to bind to the extracted 70kDa proteins). Overall, these results reflect different flexibility of thermal tolerance of intertidal invertebrate species on Marion Island, with possible variation in the underlying cellular mechanisms, suggesting that warming associated with climate change may result in changes in species assemblage structure in sub-polar environments.
By Maddy VitaleThe Ocean City Regional Chamber of Commerce released its 2018 Annual Review detailing the ways it is showcasing the resort’s beaches, Boardwalk, family-friendly entertainment, shops and eateries through a strong and focused marketing plan.Chamber Executive Director Michele Gillian said her team has had positive results by utilizing traditional and newer forms of advertising to expand the message to visitors that Ocean City should be their vacation destination.Ocean City’s traditional advertising encompasses such things as newspapers, magazines, TV, radio, visitor guides and billboards.While continuing these traditional methods, the Chamber has also been very active in promoting the city by utilizing online advertising through websites and apps, Gillian explained.“We always stress that it is important to maintain our traditional forms of advertising, while incorporating newer forms of advertising into the marketing and advertising plan for Ocean City,” she said. “Through our analytics, we can certainly see the move toward newer forms of communication.”Here is an Ocean City tourism commercial for 2019 provided by the Chamber of Commerce.In just five years, a lot has changed with how people receive and get their information about Ocean City, which is why firms specializing in digital and tradition platforms work alongside Gillian and her staff.The Chamber’s www.oceancityvacation.com website traffic also continues to grow.According to the 2018 Annual Review, compiled by Chamber Marketing Director Shawnda McGinnis, almost 56 percent of the website users viewed the site with a mobile device, as opposed to the traditional desktop computer.That is a dramatic departure from 2014, when just 2 percent of the visitors viewed the website via a mobile device and 80 percent used desktop computers, Gillian noted.As usual, Ocean City’s beaches continue to be a big draw for visitors.And in even more changes, Apple iPhones now account for 57 percent of devices used to view the resort websites, whereas five years ago they only accounted for 6 percent, Gillian added.“This stressed the change in our society and in technology,” Gillian reflected. “Ocean City has prided itself in keeping up with technology.”With a change in how people get their information, the Chamber keeps a targeted market plan, working with various media-savvy companies to develop marketing strategies so that people continue to view the website of “America’s Greatest Family Resort” and select Ocean City for their vacation getaway.The Chamber also continues to highlight some of the many accolades the destination retreat has gotten over the years, including being named “Best Beach in America” and “America’s Happiest Seaside Town” by Coastal Living magazine.Pedestrians and bikers enjoy the Ocean City Boardwalk on a sunny August 2018 day.One of the ways Ocean City keeps current and relevant, when there are so many other vacation spots for people to choose from on the Jersey Shore, is to draw people from all age groups. While families continue to be the driving force of tourism in Ocean City, officials are working hard to attract all ages, including millennials, ages 25 to 44. And what they are doing seems to be working, the Chamber’s review shows.In addition to the traditional www.oceancityvacation.com website, there is a mobile version, and more importantly, the Ocean City Vacation app, providing newer ways to connect with vacationers.Gillian said the app is geared toward attracting younger audiences as well as people of all ages, but some of the results have been surprising.“People often believe that apps are for the younger generations. However, 50 percent of the people who entered a contest we held on the app were over the age of 51,” Gillian noted. “This also correlates with the demographics on the website and with Visitor Guide requests.”Gillian added that the Chamber has been very successful in reaching the younger generations through the advertising and marketing campaigns for Ocean City through social media outlets, as well as through advertising on apps such as Waze and YouTube.This past season alone, Gillian said, the Waze analytics showed more than 17,000 navigations and more than 450,000 impressions.While a lot of things change over the years when it comes to trends, some things do stay the same.Year after year the main areas of interest for Ocean City vacationers continue to be the Chamber website’s calendar of events, vacation rental searches, where to stay, where to shop, and restaurants.And where vacationers come from remains the same with the core travelers visiting from the Tri-State area — New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York.The tourism campaign kickoff for the 2019 summer season began last month and will extend through June by promoting more attractions, new shops, the Boardwalk and seven miles of beaches.Manco and Manco is a popular pizza stop on the Boardwalk. This is where Ocean City officials went to meet up with Martin Z. Mollusk while using social distancing.
By Jon Zimney – May 16, 2020 0 423 Ceiling fan that overheated to blame for apartment fire in Elkhart IndianaLocalNews Previous articleHuge turnout, donations for United Against Hunger Drive-Thru Food DriveNext article8-year-old boy rescued from Dowagiac River Jon ZimneyJon Zimney is the News and Programming Director for News/Talk 95.3 Michiana’s News Channel and host of the Fries With That podcast. Follow him on Twitter @jzimney. Google+ Google+ Twitter Facebook WhatsApp (Bill Beck/Elkhart Truth) A bathroom exhaust fan that overheated is to blame for a fire at Williamsburg on the Lake Apartments in Elkhart.Crews were called to the complex on Pleasant Plain Avenue around 3:50 p.m. on Saturday, May 16.On arrival, crews found light smoke coming out of the front door. As they entered, they noted medium smoke on the second floor. They went to the second floor, entered the bathroom and found a small amount of fire in the bathroom.The fire was quickly extinguished with a hose.The investigation found that when the bathroom exhaust fan overheated, it dropped burning plastic onto the floor, rugs and into the trash can.The fire started to extend into the attic area.One of the other occupants stated that he had left the fan on prior to leaving the apartmentearlier in the day.The fire was ruled accidental in nature. There was no damage to other apartments orany other occupants displaced. Facebook Twitter Pinterest Pinterest WhatsApp
The motto of Special Olympics Notre Dame reads, “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt,” a phrase club vice president and senior Andrew Hosbein said describes the club’s mission well.“You hear the Vince Lombardi quote, ‘Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing,’ and from that you take sports to be ultra-competitive, which they are – who doesn’t want to win?” Hosbein said. “Yet, at the same time, one must be comfortable that they tried their best, and that’s what we try encourage through the club at Notre Dame.”Special Olympics Notre Dame, founded in 2010, connects students with members of the South Bend community with intellectual disabilities.Club co-president and senior Molly Reidy said relationships between students and Special Olympic athletes develop through participation in sports. Pick-up basketball, swimming and ice-skating are some of the largest events the club plans throughout the year, she said.“One of the biggest things I think is important to know about our club is that we’re not an event on campus, but we’re a club that plans events year around,” Reidy said.The club also plans a Special Olympics soccer program, Unified Soccer, each spring, Reidy said.Hosbein said Unified Soccer provides students and athletes with an opportunity to play on a team together.“What I think is really unique about Unified is the participation on the part of the Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s students,” Reidy said. “They are able to get involved rather than just standing on the sideline and giving pointers. And I think that’s really valuable not only for the students, but also the athletes. They feel like they’re a part of an actual team and aren’t just being instructed on how to get better. While that’s certainly a goal, the camaraderie that the students and athletes develop is special.”Unified Soccer didn’t have any local teams like it to play against when it began, but club co-president and senior Laura Gardner said the popularity of the program has since grown to include away games in Michigan. The involvement between club members and athletes provides students with a sense of pride as they see athletes improve and develop, Gardner said.“Volunteers learn to be adaptable to the kids, and in the end, after a whole season of soccer practices, it’s amazing to see children that you work with actually develop day by day in terms of skills and maturity,” Gardner said. “We had our first Unified Soccer practice today, and one of the kids from last year was directing a new kid this year and saying, ‘This is what I learned last year; this is how you should incorporate it.’ … So that was really cool.”The connection between the city of South Bend and Special Olympics Notre Dame benefits those with disabilities and their families while also popping the “Notre Dame bubble,” Reidy said.“I think the fact that we are not only bridging the gap between the Notre Dame community and the South Bend community, but also bridging the gap between those with and without disabilities – I think it goes hand-in-hand really well,” Reidy said. “We’re not only being exposed to these athletes and what they’re capable of, but we’re being exposed to their families and the ways the athletes and their families find joy. And they find opportunity through our club through the events that we hold, which I think is really rewarding.”This spring, Special Olympics Notre Dame will also participate in ‘Spread the Word to End the Word,’ a national campaign to end the casual use of the word “retarded,” Reidy said.“It’s important to take time away from school, which can become all-consuming with work, friends and social life, finding a job – and return the favor,” Hosbein said. “It’s grounding and has engendered a sense of humility, and to me, there’s nothing better than seeing how excited an athlete gets after hitting a three or scoring a goal.“At the core, sports are about competition, but Special Olympics has shown me that making others happy by playing and teaching them skills can be just as satisfying as winning.”Tags: disability, South Bend, Special Olympics, Special Olympics Notre Dame, Unified Soccer
As part of its Campus Conversations initiative, which aims to raise awareness about underrepresented societal issues, Student Diversity Board (SDB) held a discussion panel about LGBTQ youth bullying at Saint Mary’s on Wednesday.Senior Angela Bukur, SDB vice president, said having open discussions about this topic can help the Saint Mary’s community take a stand against bullying.“I hope this event brings to light the harming effects bullying has on LGBTQ youth,” Bukur said. “I hope students take away more of an awareness about LGBTQ bullying. I want students and faculty to be in support of LGBTQ students and actively make changes to show their support.”Bukur said SDB and the Sociology Club decided to coordinate this session of Campus Conversations to inform students and create a safe environment for them to express their thoughts.“LGBTQ youth bullying is especially an important topic because of the lack of knowledge and awareness some people have about this issue,” she said. “The statistics are staggering, showing that 56.7 percent of LGBTQ students did not report experiences of bullying because they doubted an investigation [would be held]. This shows that there is a lack of support for the LGBTQ community in school systems where bullying is taking place.”Bettina Spencer, chair of the psychology department, said students should make efforts to end youth bullying because its effects can harm victims for the rest of their lives.“These early experiences can really shape how people approach the world and how they respond to people around them,” Spencer said. “It becomes a really additive cycle.”According to Spencer, past encounters with bullies may cause stigma consciousness, the expectation that prejudice will continue to occur, as well as other social constraints and perceived barriers that prevent people from confiding in others. The lasting outcomes of bullying can make it difficult for victims to process traumatic experiences, she said.Spencer said events such as Campus Conversations help encourage students to support one another.“It starts to build a community where we can have more open dialogues,” Spencer said. “Having events like this is kind of the first step and also one of the best steps we can do in supporting LGBTQ people, peers, allies and people who have been bullied in general. I think this a great way to start really talking and having good, thorough discussions with each other and generate ideas and hear people’s stories.”Junior Maranda Pennington said she works to make Saint Mary’s a welcoming and inclusive environment through her involvement with the Straight and Gay Alliance and with justice education.“A lot of times I feel like people are uncomfortable talking about anything LGBTQ related,” Pennington said. “It is hard to feel validated when your identity isn’t even recognized.”Pennington said even making simple changes, such as using more inclusive language, can unite the Saint Mary’s community.“I want Saint Mary’s to truly be a place where we embrace and empower women, regardless of any aspect of our identity,” Pennington said. “I think this can only be done through education, empathy and honest dialogue.”Tags: Campus conversations initiative, LGBTQ, LGBTQ youth bullying, SMC, smc campus conversations, Student Diversity Board
Related Shows Chlumsky received Emmy nominations in 2013 and 2014 for her performance as Amy in the HBO series Veep. Her additional screen credits include Hannibal, My Girl and In the Loop. She has appeared off-Broadway in Love, Loss and What I Wore and Unconditional. An Emmy winner for The Waltons, Thomas returns to Broadway after numerous credits including An Enemy of the People, Race, A Naked Girl on the Appian Way and Democracy. Directed by Scott Ellis, the Pulitzer Prize-winning You Can’t Take It With You centers on the freethinking Sycamore family and the mayhem that ensues when their daughter’s fiancé brings his conservative, straight-laced parents to dinner on the wrong night. Chlumsky and Thomas will join a cast that includes James Earl Jones, Elizabeth Ashley, Annaleigh Ashford, Kristine Nielsen and Byron Jennings. The play will run on extension through February 22. Look who’s coming for dinner! Veep star Anna Chlumsky and Emmy winner Richard Thomas begin performances in the Broadway revival of George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart’s You Can’t Take It With You on January 6. Chlumsky will take over as Alice, replacing Rose Byrne, and Thomas will step in as Paul, previously played by Mark Linn-Baker. The production is running at the Longacre Theatre. Show Closed This production ended its run on Feb. 22, 2015 View Comments You Can’t Take It With You
And that could be valuable information. Economically, chickens rule the roost in Georgia, where poultry is the top agricultural product with an estimated annual impact of nearly $20 billion statewide. There is industry concern about the welfare of the animals they raise; anything that helps growers reap a maximum return on every flock – while maintaining an environment conducive to their well-being – can translate to important dividends for the state’s economy. “Many poultry professionals swear they can walk into a grow-out house and tell whether a flock is happy or stressed just by listening to the birds vocalize,” said Wayne Daley, a Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) principal research scientist who is leading the research. “The trouble is, it has proved hard for these pros to pinpoint for us exactly what it is that they’re hearing.” Nevertheless, scientists are convinced that poultry farmers are detecting something real. Recent research at the University of Connecticut’s Department of Animal Science indicates that it is indeed possible to differentiate how the birds react to various conditions based on their vocalizations. “The behavior of chickens is one of the best and most immediate indicators of their well-being,” said Bruce Webster, a University of Georgia poultry science professor who is working on the project. “Chickens are vocal creatures and produce different types of vocalizations at different rates and loudness depending on their circumstances.”So the Georgia Tech/University of Georgia team is working to identify and extract specific vocalization features that will bear out both the anecdotal observations and the previous scientific work. The researchers are performing stress-related experiments on small flocks, recording the birds’ reactions on audio and video and analyzing the results. GTRI is providing expertise in control-systems development and image processing, while Georgia Tech’s School of Electrical and Computer Engineering is contributing audio signal-processing technology and the University of Georgia is providing research facilities as well as guidance in experimental design as they relate to animal behavior and welfare issues. “If what experienced farmers hear and sense can be defined and quantified, sensors to detect cues from the birds themselves could really make a difference in providing real-time information on house environment, bird health, and comfort,” said Michael Lacy, head of the Department of Poultry Science at the University of Georgia. The work is funded by the Agricultural Technology Research Program, a state-supported effort to benefit the poultry and food-processing industries. Naturally, said Daley, the poultry industry already has well-established guidelines covering optimal temperature, air quality and stocking density. Nevertheless, costly problems can still crop up – control systems can malfunction, or presumably ideal levels can turn out to be problematic. “That’s where being able to judge the flock’s behavior can be so important,” Daley said. “Your temperature sensors might say that things are fine, but the birds could be telling you that they think it’s a bit too warm or other changes have occurred to make the conditions less than ideal.” From a poultry professional’s viewpoint, the flock’s opinion is probably the definitive one. Chickens take only six weeks to go from hatching to finished weight; stressful conditions can retard their growth, reducing their value when they go to market. “Contract poultry producers are paid by the pound of birds sent to market. Improving the overall health and productivity of the birds will help to improve the bottom line for individual producers,” said Casey Ritz, a University of Georgia associate professor of poultry science who is involved in the research. The research team has conducted several experiments in which they have exposed flocks to mildly stressful environmental changes. For example, temperature or ammonia levels might be increased from their initial settings for a few hours, then returned to the original level. The researchers have recorded the flocks’ vocal reactions to the experiments, with video also collected in many instances. To date, more than four terabytes of bird-vocalization audio has been gathered. Almost at once, the researchers encountered a knotty problem as they recorded bird sounds. They discovered that the large fans necessary for air circulation in a grow-out house can be considerably louder than the chickens, making it difficult to capture bird vocalizations effectively. David Anderson, a professor in the Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has been working on the best methods for harvesting useable bird sounds from the noisy environment. It’s a classic audio signal-processing problem, he said, in which the signal of interest must separated from the noise that surrounds it. “We have several approaches for extracting poultry voicing from the others noises, and we’ve been pretty successful in achieving that,” he said. “What makes this different from most other bird-song research is that we’re not listening to individuals, we’re listening to sounds in the aggregate. It’s like trying to understand what people are saying in a restaurant, when all you hear are the murmurings of a hundred diners.” To decode mass poultry vocalizing, Anderson is extracting particular features of the sound, such as speed, volume, pitch and other qualities. Then he’s utilizing machine learning – in which computers recognize complex patterns in data and make decisions based on those patterns – to analyze the extracted features and determine which characteristics may convey specific meanings. “These are initial experiments, and we’re going to have to test under a variety of conditions, but we’ve had considerable success already,” Anderson said. “By listening to the flock we can accurately tell when the birds are experiencing particular kinds of stress, such as significant temperature changes.” In addition to ensuring high yield flocks, bird-vocalization analysis could save poultry growers money in equipment costs as well, Anderson suggested. For instance, he said, currently available ammonia sensors are both expensive and short-lived. If a system consisting of a few microphones and the right computer algorithms could take over ammonia-detection tasks, it would help reduce costs for the entire industry. To date, video of the flocks hasn’t produced results as useful as the sound recordings, said GTRI’s Daley. But image processing of flock-reaction video continues, and could yield significant data down the road. “This multi-disciplinary, multi-institution project highlights the different skills necessary to tackle current problems,” Daley said. “This approach will be valuable in years to come as we tackle a variety of problems to help the industry continue to be profitable and sustainable.” Chickens can’t speak, but they can definitely make themselves heard. Most people who have visited a poultry farm will recall chicken vocalization – the technical term for clucking and squawking – as a memorable part of the experience. Researchers now believe that such avian expressiveness may be more than idle chatter. A collaborative project being conducted by the Georgia Institute of Technology and the University of Georgia is investigating whether the birds’ volubility can provide clues to how healthy and comfortable they are.
Opening day of dove season is a little over two months away, so it’s time to start planning for and planting dove fields.A prudently planned dove field can provide family entertainment and economic benefits through most of the dove season, which starts Sept. 2. Field owners can often charge $25 to $75 per hunter each day for use of the field, depending on the field’s size and what is planted in it. On the other hand, hunters should be cautious of so-called “dove fields” that are filled with pigweed and sicklepod. Field owners can make additional income by harvesting the field after the hunt for silage or hay.Dove fields should be at least 5 acres in size. Unlike most other wildlife management practices, it is essential to minimize the edges within a dove field, so rectangular fields are better than irregularly shaped fields. Doves are visual creatures and require large, open areas to see oncoming predators. Rectangular fields offer the greatest amount of visibility.The field owner must also consider the field’s longevity, or the length of time it’s to be used during dove season. Crop variation, both in species planted and planting dates, provides the greatest opportunity to extend the use of a field over the full dove season. Larger fields afford greater opportunities for planting variation, but, with a little creativity and field manipulation, even the smallest fields can offer season-long dove hunting.Often plants like corn, sorghum, milo, millet, sunflowers and sesame are planted for dove fields. It is very important that the plant matures at the right time to maximize doves’ presence in the field. Therefore, it is essential to pay attention to the maturity date of the plant being cultivated. If the plant takes 60 days to mature, or produce a seed head, then it needs to be planted at least 70 days before it is to be used during the dove season. Planting a variety of plants, or the same plant at different times, extends the usefulness of a field and provides diversity for the doves’ diet. Planting a combination of different plants also provides some insurance against crop failure. After the crop has reached maturity, it is essential to get seeds on the ground. Doves require seed-to-soil contact in order to forage. The field owner should mow the field, with the mower set as close to the ground as possible, 10 to 14 days prior to hunting. This allows enough time for birds to find the seed and begin to use the field. Mowing in strips or a checkerboard pattern puts some seed on the ground and leaves the rest of the seed for a later date.Dove field management is perhaps one of the easiest wildlife management strategies that can be put in place with basic farm equipment. Doves are migratory birds, so it is not likely that a bevy of them will stay in one place very long. However, doves do tend to return to the same area each season, with larger concentrations inhabiting the most attractive places. Local attention to the basic needs of these migratory birds will greatly increase the chances of successful dove hunting opportunities and can potentially provide revenue for the owners of properly managed fields.In Georgia, the 2017-2018 mourning dove season runs from Sept. 2 to Sept. 17, 2017; Oct. 14 to Nov. 2, 2017; and Nov. 23, 2017, to Jan. 15, 2018.
Senator Patrick Leahy reports that General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products, which maintains an engineering division in Burlington, has been awarded a $94.6 million order from the US Army to continue production of reactive armor for 440 Bradley Fighting Vehicles.General Dynamics’ reactive armor system uses special tiles that fasten to the exterior of the Bradley Fighting Vehicles, allowing them to better withstand direct hits from a variety of anti-armor munitions.As a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and of its Defense Subcommittee, Leahy was instrumental early on in promoting the concept of Bradley reactive armor tiles. He sought funding for the project each year in five successive defense budget bills, securing more than $93 million for the project from 2003 to 2006. The Army offered the current contract for competitive bids, and the contract was won by General Dynamics.A substantial proportion of the work will be completed in Vermont, totaling about $27 million. Leahy said the work will sustain 10 General Dynamics program management and engineering jobs in Burlington. He said additional work under the contract will sustain about 60 production jobs at Vermont Aerospace Manufacturing of Lyndonville, which manufactures the outer shell of each tile. Earlier this month the Lyndonville firm announced it had become 100 percent employee owned with the assistance of the Vermont Employee Ownership Center, an organization Leahy has helped with federal grants that are used to provide technical assistance to Vermont firms.‘This armor program directly supports our troops and their missions,’ said Leahy. ‘In securing these early investments, I believed that the armor program would prove its value, and it has. The Bradley reactive armor program has become a mainstay in the President’s budget requests to Congress. General Dynamics has put these contracts to good use for our troops and for Vermont’s economy, creating and keeping good jobs in Burlington and the Northeast Kingdom.’Source: Leahy. 11.23.2010